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Guide to the Brooklyn Navy Yard oral history collection ARC.003

Brooklyn Historical Society
128 Pierrepont Street
Brooklyn 11201

Brooklyn Historical Society

Collection processed by Amy Lau, Mary Mann, Aliki Caloyeras, and Margaret Fraser

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on  , September 3, 2020
Finding aid written in English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Container List

Oral History Interview with Audrey Lyons, May 2, 2009

Biographical / Historical

Audrey Garbers Lyons (1924- ) grew up in the Cyprus Hills neighborhood of Brooklyn. Lyons attended Brooklyn College before she left to work at the Navy Yard in 1943 to help support her family after her father's business closed. Unlike some of the other workers at the Navy Yard, Lyons was a federal employee.

Scope and Contents

Audrey Garbers Lyons (1924- ) worked as a parts inspector at the Navy Yard for the federal government from 1943 until WWII ended in 1945. Lyons used a micrometer to measure ship parts. During her interview, she remembers that the women mostly tested the smaller parts. She also recalls talking and singing with the women she worked with, who were mostly college educated, and many of whom were married and worried about their husbands in the War. Lyons described her section of the Navy Yard as a little village, explaining that she recognized everyone in her own building, but no one else at the Navy Yard. She also remembers the christening of the USS Missouri, smells from a nearby chocolate factory and the jumpsuit she wore at work. Also present at the time of the interview was Susan Lyons, Audrey Lyons' daughter. Interview conducted by Sady Sullivan and Jennifer Egan.

Conditions Governing Access

This interview can be accessed onsite at Brooklyn Historical Society's Othmer Library and online at the Oral History Portal.

Subject Organizations

  • New York Naval Shipyard
  • Missouri (Battleship : BB 63)

Subject Topics

  • Family
  • Friendship
  • Local transit
  • Neighborhoods -- New York (State) -- Kings County
  • Shipbuilding -- New York (State) -- Kings County
  • Shipfitting
  • Transportation
  • Wages -- New York (State) -- Kings County
  • Women -x Employment -- New York (State) -- Kings County
  • Work environment -- New York (State) -- Kings County
  • World War, 1939-1945

Subject Places

  • Cypress Hills (New York, N.Y.)
  • Brooklyn (New York, N.Y.)